Rumors have long flown around Area 51 CIA site, UFO dissection location, secret U.S. Air Force research facility? True or not, here are a couple of things we do know about Groom Lake. Soviet Airplane Evaluation One of the most successful foreign aircraft evaluations done in the United States was on the MiG 21. The MiG 21 a fighter interceptor that was introduced in 1959 and widely exported to countries with friendly ties to the Soviet Union. The MiG 21 proved to be a capable fighter in Vietnam, where it scored a shockingly high number of kills against U.S. airframes, despite being considerably older, slower, and less well armed. In 1966, Israel s Mossad Intelligence Agency arranged for a pilot in the Iraqi Air Force named Munir Redfa to defect from Iraq to Israel. Redfa was an Assyrian Christian who felt that his Christian heritage was preventing his advancement in the Iraqi Air Force. He was also a MiG 21 pilot. Mossad learned of his potential interest in defection, and in one of Mossad s most challenging missions, managed to smuggle his family out of Iraq to Israel. In a carefully choreographed mission, Redfa flew his MiG 21 from Iraq to an airfield in Israel, despite being seen on radar by Syrian air traffic controllers, who alerted the Iraqi Air Force. Israel used his MiG 21 to evaluate the airframe s capabilities and get a sense of what it was capable of. In 1968, the MiG 21 was loaned to the United States as a part of a Defense Intelligence Agency project called HAVE DOUGHNUT that existed for much the same purpose. The HAVE DOUGHNUT MiG 21 program took place at Area 51. A similar DIA program, HAVE DRILL, evaluated a MiG 17 that Israel had lucked upon, also at Groom Lake. Both the HAVE DOUGHNUT and HAVE DRILL programs helped revise the Air Force s tactics against Soviet fighters, particularly over Vietnam, where North Vietnamese pilots kills were close to on par with American kills and resulted in the creation of the famed Top Gun fighter pilot school. Stealthy Spies Area 51 also played host to a number of Air Force and CIA aircraft development projects. The U 2 spy plane, designed to spy over the Soviet Union, needed to be tested somewhere remote, away from prying eyes like a desert in Nevada. The U 2 s incredibly high cruising altitude, at around 70,000 feet, combined with it''s odd shape proved to be fertile ground for UFO hunters and conspiracy theorists. After a U 2 spy plane was shot down over the Soviet Union in 1960, the CIA decided that rather than flying out of the reach of Soviet surface to air missiles and interceptors, they d fly faster at Mach 3 . It was at Groom Lake that the CIA conducted the initial testing and development of the CIA s A 12, eventually the SR 71 Blackbird. The Blackbird s successor, the SR 72, may be at Groom Lake too. Although the SR 71 airframe had some stealthy characteristics, it wasn t until 1977 that the Air Force first truly stealthy design was tested. The F 117 Nighthawk, discussed in another piece, was the world s first truly stealthy design, tested at you guessed it Groom Lake. Still Important? In 2019, a Russian plane, part of the Open Skies treaty between the United States and Russia, flew over Area 51 and photographed the sensitive installation and a number of other secretive military installations on the west coast. It seems that Area 51 may still have some secrets to uncover. Caleb Larson is a Defense Writer with The National Interest. He holds a Master of Public Policy and covers U.S. and Russian security, European defense issues, and German politics and culture. View the discussion thread. copy; Copyright 2020 Center for the National Interest All Rights Reserved
Yossi Cohen, head of Israel ''s Mossad, has learned a very interesting lesson over the recent weeks: It is easier to ”steal ” the Iranian nuclear archives and transfer them to Israel than to procure medical ventilators and bring them to Israel ''s hospitals. Cohen, who orchestrated in 2018 the unbelievable operation in which Mossad agents went off with the Iranian files under the noses of the regime in Tehran, now heads the unprecedented effort to bring to Israel ventilators, medical equipment and more in the war against the coronavirus. Cohen now heads a secret undercover operations room that was created in the Sheba hospital. Hundreds of his people are combing every corner of the globe for vital equipment and technology. They don ''t have a limit on their budget, and the order they received was to do everything and anything to guarantee that Israel will be able to cope with the virus under optimal conditions. Israel correctly responded to the coronavirus early in the game. The initial decisions to close Israel ''s airspace and limit entrance to people from China and other places were made just in time. This gave the country some breathing space before the virus actually erupted. But almost nothing was done with regard to anti coronavirus equipment until the virus inhabited the country and began to spread. The Israeli health system was caught unprepared; it had been subject to ongoing budget cutbacks, as well as general neglect, in the last decade. The Israeli health system as a whole is viewed as successful and efficient. Israel has a National Health Insurance Law that provides free health coverage to all its citizens and a network of family and community clinics that are among the world ''s most developed. On the other hand, the numbers of nurses and intensive care beds per capita are among the lowest in the West. The rates of death from infection within the hospitals are increasing and viewed as one of the highest in the West. The coronavirus caught Israel with less than 2,000 ventilators and a chronic shortage of protective clothing, surgical masks, N95 masks, coronavirus test kits, special swabs and more. The Health Ministry ''s worst case scenario talks about a million coronavirus carriers in the month of May; this translates into about 10,000 patients in serious condition who will need ventilators. Netanyahu ''s nightmare is to see thousands of coronavirus patients die due to a lack of ventilators.The prime minister, who has an anxious temperament and often exaggerates threats and invents worst case scenarios, is afraid of Israel becoming the Mediterranean version of Italy where the health system collapsed in light of the plethora of people in serious condition. He knows that pictures of Israeli coronavirus sufferers dying due to a lack of ventilators would mark the end of his political career. That #39;s why it was inevitable that he appointed Cohen to the job of procuring the necessary equipment. The Mossad is Netanyahu ''s secret weapon mdash; it is very popular in the Israeli public. In addition, as opposed to the defense system and the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) mdash; which are under Defense Minister Naftali Bennett mdash; the direct commander in chief of the Mossad is Netanyahu. This allows him to take public and political credit for the Mossad ''s success.
Allen Park, Mich. The Detroit Lions announced today that they have traded CB Darius Slay to the Philadelphia Eagles. Additional trade terms were not disclosed.After entering the NFL as a second round draft selection with the Lions in the 2013 NFL Draft out of Mississippi State, Slay appeared in 103 games (94 starts) for the Lions and totaled 342 total tackles (292 solo), 1.0 sack, 19 interceptions, 104 pass defenses, one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries.
The new center will be Infosys; seventh addition to the network of cyber defense centers spread across North America, Europe, and Asia. The facility is dedicated to detect, assess, and respond to cybersecurity threats and breaches.Vishal Salvi, Chief Information Security Officer amp; Head of Cyber Security Practice, Infosys, said, "At Infosys, we 're constantly investing in modern, cutting edge security offerings and solutions to best protect our customers against current and future cyber threats. The Cyber Defense Center is staffed with expert security analysts with niche skills around threat research and intelligence gathering to deliver best in class services to our customers. Additionally, advanced data analytics and machine learning models are deployed to detect zero day threats by unknown threat actors. This supports our commitment to helping our customers build a resilient cybersecurity program that operates at scale, while increasing operational efficiency and reducing costs. "
The first German line of defense against colds is usually tea. Brews of all kinds will be prescribed to you by doctors and neighbours alike. Garlic tea, ginger tea, elderberry tea, thyme tea, lime blossom tea and onion tea are all preferred for colds and flus. The extra liquid is meant to help lubricate irritated mucous membranes, and the herbs are believed to soothe coughs or sore throats. Onions
Key point: For the time being, the MLRS still provides an effective rocket system for U.S. armored units. On February 24, 1991, the ground phase of Operation Desert Storm began. Over the next four days, the soldiers of an international coalition, formed to eject the Iraqi army of Saddam Hussein from the neighboring nation of Kuwait, carried out a whirlwind offensive that quickly overwhelmed their foe. During this time, tens of thousands of Iraqi soldiers were taken prisoner. Many of them, arms thrust upward in a sign of surrender, said one thing when they were taken into custody: No more steel rain. For weeks before the ground attack, these men had been systematically pummeled by the entire range of weaponry available to their opponents B 52 bombing strikes, air attacks using tons of precision smart weapons, plus many more thousands of tons of traditional unguided bombs and rockets. Added to this was the close air support of fighter bomber aircraft and attack helicopters. Artillery barrages dropped down on them by the dozens and hundreds, adding yet another level to the pounding they received. The cries of no more steel rain applied to none of these, however. Instead, it was the nickname of a deadly new artillery weapon seeing its debut in combat: the M270 Multiple Launch Rocket System, or MLRS. Batteries of these weapons had been deployed to the Gulf with U.S. and British forces, who used them to blanket their target areas with hundreds of rockets releasing thousands of explosive submunitions, or bomblets, that devastated armored vehicles, trucks, equipment, and men. Volleys of rockets pounded the hapless Iraqi troops and paved the way for the sweeping infantry and armor assaults that followed. The MLRS proved itself alongside such other late Cold War weapons as the M1 Abrams tank, M2 Bradley Fighting Vehicle, and AH64 Apache helicopter. Like these weapons, the MLRS had its origins in the 1970s development programs of the post Vietnam era. The MLRS Concept Takes Shape During the late 1960s and early 1970s, America s involvement in the Vietnam War drew most of the focus away from the traditional enemies of the time, the Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact allies. As the United States gradually withdrew from the conflict in Asia, its attention once again returned to Eastern Europe, and the U.S. Army was not happy encountering the Russians new claws. The Soviets had taken advantage of America s distraction to build up its conventional forces to unprecedented levels. The Warsaw Pact now sat across the Iron Curtain with tens of thousands of new tanks, armored vehicles, cannons, and rocket artillery pieces. Artillery had always weighed heavily in Soviet planning, and they now had new, longer ranged cannons than most comparable American weapons. The disparity in rocket artillery was even more one sided. Soviet tactics used barrages of thousands of rockets fired from truck mounted multiple rocket launchers (MRLs) such as the BM 21. American artillery was only scantily supplied with rocket launchers, many of them left over from World War II. With some exceptions, U.S. planners heavily favored cannon artillery, primarily for its relative accuracy. Rockets at that time were considered area fire weapons; that is, they were fired en masse at an area of ground where the enemy was thought to be, rather than at a point target such as a bunker or trenchline. Existing rockets simply were not accurate enough for such pinpoint work, although they packed quite a punch and tended to have a terrifying psychological effect on the enemy. The Soviets were willing to saturate a target area with rockets, figuring that some, at least, would find their mark. For American artillerists, weaned on the concepts of accuracy and economy of expenditure in ammunition, large scale use of indiscriminate rockets simply was not palatable. A number of occurrences changed that mindset. In 1973, the Arab Israeli War broke out. Attrition rates in that conflict were far higher than expected, greater than any possible rate of replacement for lost armor and aircraft. One of the more effective Israeli tactics had been to hit enemy Surface to Air Missile (SAM) sites with MRLs. The American military establishment noted this. It also noted that in the event of war in Europe, NATO would have to fight outnumbered against a well equipped enemy in intense, destructive combat. After long debate, the U.S. Army finally wrote a requirement for a new rocket launcher in March 1974, calling it the GSRS, or General Support Rocket System. It would be used to engage enemy air defenses and for counterbattery fire, neutralizing opposing artillery. The new launcher would have long range and massive firepower, freeing the cannon units to provide close support to the infantry and armor. Several NATO allies, including the United Kingdom, France, and West Germany, were consulted and agreed to collaborate on the project. Since the Europeans already had looked at a similar system independently, their name was adopted, changing GSRS to MLRS. Design and Development Actual development began in September 1977, undertaken by the Boeing and Vought Aerospace companies, which beat out three other competitors for the contract. Development continued into the 1980s and eventually became the highest priority for the Field Artillery School, which considered it the Army s most spectacular new weapons system. After initial testing proved successful, the MLRS was adopted, with the first production models, designated M270, arriving at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, in August 1982. The first operational battery of M270s was formed in March 1983, and the new unit was sent to West Germany the following September. These batteries were composed of three platoons of three launchers each, a total of nine launchers per battery. By 1987, 25 such batteries were in service. The basic M270 was a self propelled armored vehicle that mated two main subcomponents: the Launcher Loader Module (LLM) containing the rocket pods and the hardware needed to load and unload them and the carrier vehicle, essentially an enlarged version of the Bradley Fighting Vehicle chassis. The vehicle was not quite 23 feet long, 9.5 feet wide, and 8.5 feet high. It weighed 52,990 pounds ready for combat. The three man crew sat in a cab above the engine compartment. This cab was armored to protect against small arms fire and artillery fragments. The engine was a Cummins 8 cylinder diesel developing 500 horsepower for a top speed of 40 miles per hour and a range of 483 kilometers. Directly behind the cab was the LLM, which carried two pods of six rockets each, one next to the other. For firing, the LLM raised and rotated to point to the vehicle s side. It could fire single rockets or any number up to its full load of 12 within 60 seconds. The crew consisted of a crew chief, gunner, and driver. The crew chief commanded the vehicle, oversaw firing operations, and performed checks of the other two crewmen. The gunner operated a firing panel to aim and fire the rockets at selected targets. The M270 s computer calculated the data for the rocket s direction of fire, point of impact, and range; these calculations were based on information received digitally via radio or entered manually by the gunner. The driver operated the M270 and performed maintenance. The heart and purpose of the M270 were its munitions. The basic rocket was the M26, with a range of 32 kilometers. It carried 644 grenade sized submunitions. A single M270 could blanket a 600 square meter area with 7,728 bomblets, devastating to men, material, and light vehicles, with a limited effect on armored vehicles. One battery of MLRS firing a complete volley of 108 rockets had the equivalent firepower of 33 battalions of cannon artillery. These rockets were packaged in pods of six rounds each. Rockets were only part of the picture, however. The M270 also fired the M39 Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) missile, each launcher carrying two missiles in place of the normal 12 rockets. The ATACMS carried 950 bomblets and had a range of 165 kilometers, giving MLRS the ability to range deep in enemy territory, hitting command posts, logistics depots, air defenses, and assembly areas for advancing units. ATACMS started development in 1985 and was rushed into service for Desert Storm. The MLRS Doctrine The doctrine for the use of MLRS sought to take advantage of its mobility and firepower. To avoid the expected Soviet counterbattery fire, M270s would spread out individually and hide themselves until needed for a mission. The launcher would then move to a firing position, launch its rockets, and immediately move away, hopefully before the Soviets could calculate the launch point using radar and fire on it. The M270 crew would then proceed to a reloading point, load fresh rocket pods, and move to a completely new hiding position near a different firing point. This would prevent the enemy from destroying the valuable launchers as they poured volley after volley into the advancing Soviet armored hordes. Fortunately for all concerned, such combat never happened before the Cold War came to an end. Instead, the MLRS would be called upon in the deserts of the Middle East. When the Iraqi Army conquered Kuwait in 1990, hundreds of thousands of American troops were sent to Saudi Arabia, first to defend against further Iraqi aggression and then to free Kuwait from its occupiers. They took with them 89 MLRS launchers. The baptism of fire for the M270 came on January 17, 1991. That day, Battery A of the 6th Battalion, 27th Field Artillery was traveling west on a highway called Tapline Road, en route to an assembly area. At 1620 hours, an order came to fire its ATACMS missiles at SAM sites that posed a danger to planned B 52 air strikes. Although it took several hours to coordinate clear airspace for the missile s trajectories, at 0042 on January 18, two missiles roared from their launchers, destroying both SAM sites. Battery A fired six more missiles that day targeting more of the Iraqi air defense network. 1 2 Next View the discussion thread. copy; Copyright 2019 Center for the National Interest All Rights Reserved
In the pantheon of American military commanders, Curtis LeMay stands out as one of the more controversial individuals. His gruff, no nonsense, yet pragmatic approaches to strategic bombardment and airpower leave most people either admiring his aptitude or loathing his methods. The author of the Japanese fire raids in the closing months of World War II, LeMay s actions provide one of the clearest examples of total war and unrestricted bombing. His ability to get the most out of his command became a hallmark of his leadership acumen. General Curtis LeMay (A.Y. Owen Getty) With the dropping of the atomic weapons from strategic bombers, many believed warfare had entered a new age rendering conventional military operations obsolete or at least a very distant secondary to air centric campaigns. Subscribing to this new vision, LeMay took charge of Strategic Air Command (SAC) in 1948 and served as its commander for an unprecedented nine years until 1957. During this time, he oversaw Strategic Air Command s growth not only in terms of size and numbers but also in increased lethality and capability. Commanding the most destructive military force ever assembled, LeMay functioned as the catalyst and the fulcrum, which made Strategic Air Command a primary symbol of American military might. With this view of the future, LeMay calculated that the very nature of warfare in the atomic age had to be based on offensive actions with no room for defensively based policies. Trevor Albertson s Winning Armageddon addresses how and why LeMay viewed an atomic preemptive attack as a viable strategy in the emerging Cold War environment. Following the war, a new paradigm developed, which argued the initiator of an atomic aerial assault had a distinct advantage over the defender or a retaliatory strike. Fearing Strategic Air Command s fleet of bombers might be caught on the ground and vulnerable to a Soviet attack, LeMay believed the same risk existed regarding American national infrastructure and its cities. Given this possibility, LeMay insisted the only good defense was a good offense. However, LeMay fortunately failed to convince the nation s leadership to change the stated policy regarding nuclear weapons. In this vein, Albertson s main argument addresses LeMay s quest for a preemptive attack policy and his advocacy of it to the nation s leadership. In this vein, the author comprehensively addresses the Strategic Air Command commander s push for preemption despite resistance from other elements of the defense establishment and the Federal government. From LeMay s cold warrior perspective, a preemptive policy was the only viable method to ensure Strategic Air Command s combat capability while guaranteeing the nation s safety before the Soviets possibly destroyed them both, most worryingly in a kind of surprise attack akin to Pearl Harbor. Albertson, a former Air Force intelligence officer and former Air Command and Staff College instructor, demonstrates a full understanding of Strategic Air Command, the Air Force, and their roles in the early cold war years in the work s 227 pages. His technical discussion in five well constructed chapters makes for not only a fast read, but an entertaining one. With well annotated endnotes and extensive bibliography, Alberston shows a mastery of the topic only a few academics in this field can match. The work is largely a collection of the Strategic Air Command commander s actions and words encouraging a preemptive policy in both public and classified venues. Loaded with quotes, speeches, and references by LeMay advocating this policy, the author makes a clear and well documented assessment of the Strategic Air Command commander s viewpoint regarding nuclear preemption. Using primary source material, Albertson sets a high bar for works of this nature. Instead of using well trodden secondary sources, the author dug extensively in various archives to support his argument. Albertson also provides new insights into LeMay s offensive mindset. While addressing LeMay s strategic imperative, the author also delves into his effective leadership focusing on troop welfare, quality of life, and realistic training a point many treatises on LeMay fail to address. LeMay consistently demonstrated his concern for the people in his command even if it was only a way to increase performance. Albertson does a credible job of addressing what some might see as the Strategic Air Command commander s use of a softer side to foster the best performance possible. As the book addresses LeMay s advocacy for preemptive strategy almost singularly, the detour regarding troop welfare initiatives is a welcome addition. Given the work s focus on LeMay s push for a preemptive strategy, the author might have addressed more of the challenges Strategic Air Command faced early under LeMay s tenure. When LeMay took over in October 1948, the command lacked much of an atomic capability. Although the book subtly hints via the subtitle this is a treatise of the command, a discussion regarding the development of Strategic Air Command s capability quickly falls to the wayside. Instead, the book maintains its focus on preemption and LeMay s drive for its acceptance. While the author mentions this in his preface, the singular thrust regarding preemption omits discussion of the myriad of problems LeMay had to fix in addition to troop morale. Early on, Strategic Air Command suffered from a lack of ready airframes, maintenance efforts, training, and competence at almost every level. Inclusion of these efforts might have underscored and even highlighted LeMay s efforts to build a preemptive capable force. Despite this omission, the book is an excellent contribution to the historiography of the early Cold War, Strategic Air Command, and LeMay, making it a must for any student of the cold war. Albertson helps provide more insight into Strategic Air Command leadership during LeMay s tenure while illustrating the commander s thought process and quiet, yet aggressive, style of leadership. The author s excellent use of primary sources adroitly illustrate his thesis and fills a void in the current historiography. The book is a worthy and needed addition to the current historiography regarding the Cold War and strategic nuclear bombardment. John M. Curatola is a professor of history at the U.S. Army School of Advanced Military Studies. The views expressed in this article are the author s alone and do not reflect the official position of the U.S. Army, the Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government. This article first appeared at Real Clear Defense. Image: Flickr. View the discussion thread. copy; Copyright 2019 Center for the National Interest All Rights Reserved
Key point: A true turning point in the war against the Nazis. January 1945 with World War II in its sixth year found the Allied armies going on the offensive after the Battle of the Bulge, but they were still west of the Rhine and six weeks behind schedule in their advance toward Germany. Closing to the Rhine was not easy. Although U.S. and French units of Lt. Gen. Jacob L. Devers Sixth Army Group had reached the western bank around Strasbourg in late 1944, the river proved too difficult to cross. Even if an assault could have been mounted, the Allied forces would have been too far away from the heart of Germany to pose any meaningful threat. The key to eventual victory lay in the central and northern Rhineland, but three factors delayed an advance: the failure of Operation Market Garden, the British American airborne invasion of Holland, the onset of an extremely wet autumn and harsh winter, and the unexpectedly rapid recovery of the German Army in the wake of recent Allied advances. A coordinated Allied campaign proved difficult to achieve. General Omar N. Bradley s U.S. 12th Army Group was licking its wounds after the almost disastrous Ardennes counteroffensive, and it was clear to Field Marshal Bernard L. Montgomery, commander of the British 21st Army Group, that the Americans would not be ready to undertake a major offensive for some time. Despite its vast reserve of manpower, unlike the critically depleted British Army, the U.S. Army had become seriously deficient of infantry replacements. Monty made the first move. Meanwhile, on January 12, the Soviet Army launched a long awaited, massive offensive from Warsaw toward the River Oder and Berlin. This was just in time, thought Montgomery and General Dwight D. Ike Eisenhower, the Allied supreme commander. By the end of the month, the Russians were only 50 miles from the German capital. While the Americans were recovering, it devolved on the 21st Army Group, still supported by Lt. Gen. William H. Texas Bill Simpson s U.S. Ninth Army, to take over the battle as soon as winter loosened its grip. Monty and Ike agreed that the next stage should be to break through the Germans formidable Siegfried Line and close up to the left bank of the Rhine. The main objective was the historic city of Wesel, on the opposite side of the great river in flat country just north of the Ruhr Valley. It was here that Montgomery had originally sought to seize a bridgehead in September 1944, and common sense still favored it. Accordingly, two well knit, almost copybook offensives were planned for February 8, 1945: Operation Veritable on the left flank and Operation Grenade on the right, adjacent to the boundary with Bradley s 12th Army Group. Monty announced that the 21st Army Group s task was to destroy all enemy in the area west of the Rhine from the present forward positions south of Nijmegen (Holland) as far south as the general line Julich Dusseldorf, as a preliminary to crossing the Rhine and engaging the enemy in mobile war to the north of the Ruhr. Three armies would be involved in the offensives: the Canadian First, the British Second, and the U.S. Ninth. Commanding the Canadian force was the distinguished, 57 year old General Henry D.G. Harry Crerar, a World War I artillery veteran and a man of cool judgment and cold nerves. The ration strength of his First Army exceeded 470,000 men, and no Canadian had ever led such a large force. The British Second Army was led by the skilled, unassuming Lt. Gen. Sir Miles Bimbo Dempsey, a 48 year old World War I veteran of the Western Front and Iraq who later acquitted himself well in the Dunkirk evacuation, the Western Desert, Sicily, Italy, and Normandy. Tall, bald, Texas born General Simpson, commanding 300,000 men of the U.S. Ninth Army, had served in the Philippine Insurrection, the 1916 Mexico punitive expedition, and on the Western Front in 1918. Eisenhower said of the 56 year old officer, If Simpson ever made a mistake as an Army commander, it never came to my attention. With 11 divisions and nine independent brigades, the Canadian Army would clear the way in February 1945 up to the town of Xanten; the Ninth Army, with 10 divisions in three corps, would cross the Roer River and move northward to Dusseldorf (Operation Grenade), and the four divisions of the Second Army would attack in the center. Although he was in customary high spirits about the operation, Montgomery knew that it would be no cakewalk. I visited the Veritable area today, he warned Field Marshal Sir Alan Brooke, chief of the Imperial General Staff, on February 6. The ground is very wet, and roads and tracks are breaking up, and these factors are likely to make progress somewhat slow after the operation is launched. Besides expected opposition from at least 10 well entrenched Wehrmacht divisions, the Allied troops would have to face minefields, flooded rivers and terrain, a lack of roads, appalling weather, and tough going in the gloomy, tangled Reichswald and Hochwald forests. Montgomery won final approval for the great dual assault on the Rhine on February 1, and the preparations were hastily finalized under tight security. Strict blackout regulations were enforced, and a cover story was concocted to convince the enemy that the offensive would be in a northerly direction to liberate Holland, rather than an eastern thrust into Germany. Daytime gatherings of troops were forbidden unless under cover; large concentrations of vehicles, weapons, and ammunition were camouflaged or concealed in farmyards, barns, and haystacks, and rubber dummies of tanks and artillery pieces were positioned along an imaginary battle line where they might attract the attention of enemy patrols. Logistical feats were accomplished speedily as thousands of men, vehicles, and equipment were transported to the forward assembly lines. The British and Canadian soldiers worked around the clock. Sappers built and improved 100 miles of road using 20,000 tons of stones, 20,000 logs, and 30,000 pickets, and 446 freight trains hauled 250,000 tons of equipment and supplies to the railheads. It was estimated that the ammunition alone all types, stacked side by side and five feet high would line the road for 30 miles. Engineers constructed five bridges across the River Maas, using 1,880 tons of equipment. The biggest was a 1,280 foot long British designed Bailey bridge. Outside Nijmegen, an airfield was laid in five days for British and Canadian rocket firing Hawker Typhoons, which would support the offensive. Meanwhile, a formidable array of armor and specialized vehicles was assembled. It included Churchill, Cromwell, Centaur, Comet, Valentine, and Sherman heavy and medium tanks; Bren gun carriers, jeeps, half tracks, and armored cars; amphibious Weasel, Buffalo, and DUKW cargo and personnel carriers; and 11 regiments of Hobart s Funnies, Churchills and Shermans fitted with antimine flails, flamethrowers, and bridging equipment. Invented by Maj. Gen. Sir Percy Hobart, these had proved invaluable in the Normandy invasion and the clearing of the flooded Scheldt Estuary by Crerar s army. Under the command of the Canadian First Army, the Veritable offensive was to be spearheaded by the seasoned British XXX Corps led by 49 year old Lt. Gen. Sir Brian G. Horrocks. He returned from leave in England to plunge into preparations for the largest operation he had ever undertaken. A much wounded veteran of Ypres, Siberia, El Alamein, Tunisia, Normandy, and Belgium, the tall, lithe Horrocks nicknamed Jorrocks by his mentor, Montgomery was a charismatic officer who led from the front and was regarded as one of the finest corps commanders of the war. Horrocks regarded Monty s overall plan for the offensive as simplicity itself. The XXX Corps was to attack in a southerly direction from the Nijmegen area with its right on the River Maas and its left on the Rhine. Forty eight hours later, said Horrocks, our old friends, General Simpson s U.S. Ninth Army, were to cross the River Roer and advance north to meet us. The German forces would thus be caught in a vise and be faced with the alternatives, either to fight it out west of the Rhine or to withdraw over the Rhine and then be prepared to launch counterattacks when we ourselves subsequently attempted to cross . In theory, this looked like a comparatively simple operation, but all battles have their problems, and in this case the initial assault would have to smash through a bottleneck well suited to defense and consisting in part of the famous Siegfried Line. Horrocks decided to use the maximum force possible and open Operation Veritable with five divisions, from right to left, in line: the 51st Highland, 53rd Welsh, 15th Scottish, and the 2nd and 3rd Canadian, followed by the 43rd Wessex and Maj. Gen. Sir Alan Adair s proud Guards Armored Division. On the morning of February 4, Horrocks briefed his commanders in the packed cinema in the southern Dutch town of Tilburg. Clad in brown corduroy trousers and a battlefield jacket, the unpretentious general drew a warm response as he crisply outlined the offensive, radiated confidence, and moved from group to group with a friendly and humorous word. Like Montgomery, he made a practice of keeping all ranks informed about operations. 1 2 3 4 Next View the discussion thread. copy; Copyright 2019 Center for the National Interest All Rights Reserved
Cybercriminals have developed a strain of ransomware that circumvents security protections by rebooting Windows machines in the middle of its infection routine.
Total Defense Essential Antivirus''s Bitdefender powered engine is accurate, but with few other features, we're struggling to see why you shouldn''t just buy Bitdefender Antivirus, instead.Total Defense Antivirus may not be a brand that regularly makes security headlines, but don''t let that put you off it''s more capable than you might expect.
An Israeli Iron Dome rocket defense system, built in partnership with the U.S., stationed in the Golan Heights. Ilia Yefimovich picture alliance via Getty Images.Arthur Herman is a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute and the author, most recently, of 1917: Lenin, Wilson, and the Birth of the New World Disorder (HarperCollins, 2017).
That s the gist of the Labour Party s intention towards Israel as detailed in its foreign and defense policies described in the platform document published Thursday We will immediately suspend the sale of arms to Saudi Arabia for use in Yemen and to Israel for arms used in violation of the human rights of Palestinian civilians, and conduct a root and branch reform of our arms exports regime so ministers can never again turn a blind eye to British made weapons being used to target innocent civilians, according to the party s elections policy manifesto.
Amazon on Friday cited comments by US President Donald Trump at a rally and to journalists as it pursues its challenge to the Pentagon''s surprise decision to award a lucrative contract to rival Microsoft last month. For the first time, Amazon directly linked comments by the president to the award of the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure contract, also known as JEDI, to Microsoft last month. Though Amazon filed its protest under seal, it also notified the Court of Federal Claims that it intends to use four videos as exhibits, including one of Trump at a February 2016 campaign rally, as well as one of a Fox News host urging him to prevent the Pentagon from awarding the contract to the online retail giant.The e commerce giant formally filed a protest with the Court of Federal Claims to challenge the award of the cloud computing contract, following through on a threat it made last week. It did so under seal to protect trade secrets.
Key point: Thanks to the introduction of better fighters and the use of aggressive, realistic offensive fighter doctrines, American airmen attained not the air superiority they sought, but total air supremacy over the whole of western Europe. The popular conception of the struggle in the air over northern Europe during World War II is of squadrons of sleek fighters racing over the German heartland to protect contrailed streams of lumbering bombers stretching beyond sight. This is as it was during the second half of America s air war against Germany, but it was as far from the truth as it is possible to get at the start of that great aerial crusade. It took until late 1943 nearly two years after the United States entered World War II before the United Kingdom based Eighth Air Force mounted strategically significant bombing missions against targets in occupied northern Europe. The fault for this lay partly in the availability and slow development of the equipment, but it is also a fact that the two men at the top of the Eighth Air Force command structure stubbornly clung to old and discredited theories that stunted the effectiveness of the strategic bombing effort and cost thousands of their countrymen their freedom or their lives. In the beginning, the fighter was a short legged creature whose role of protecting the bombers was eclipsed by its role of guarding friendly territory and installations. The difference, which is crucial, was the product of technology range and the power of aircraft engines and intellect. Until late 1943, surprisingly late in the war, the use of the fighter as an offensive weapon was stunted by the defensive mind set of the pursuit acolytes of the interwar decades. The pursuit airplane had evolved over the fixed battlefields of Western Europe during World War I. Pursuit aircraft had been developed to prevent enemy reconnaissance airplanes from overflying friendly lines and to protect friendly observation airplanes from enemy pursuits while the observers overflew enemy lines. The pursuit was conceived as a tactical and a defensive weapon, and it was limited to these roles both by conception and by the technologies of the day. The Army Air Corps Between the world wars, the development of American pursuit aircraft was hobbled by budgetary restrictions that for many years slowed or obviated altogether the creation of new technologies or even methodical experimentation with new tactics. The U.S. Marine Corps did advance the use of the single engine pursuit as a nascent close support weapon to bolster the infantry, but the interests of various intra Army constituencies prevented similar advances in what had come to be called the Army Air Corps. To the degree that it developed at all, the Air Corps saw increasingly heavy and longer ranged bombers in its future. And, as the limited available research and development dollars were expended on speedier bombers, the pursuits of the day were increasingly outranged and outrun. Inevitably, American bombers of the late 1930s were designed to be self defending because they could fly much farther and at least somewhat faster than could the pursuits of the day. The pursuits, which were being developed at a much slower pace, were relegated to a point defense role guarding cities, industrial targets, and air bases. When World War II began, the Air Corps shortly to be renamed the Army Air Forces was divided into two distinct combat arms, fighters and bombers. And, by virtue of the fighter s stunted development, there appeared little chance that the two would spend much time working together. As soon as the Army Air Corps was pulled into World War II it became focused on the defense of American coastal cities, several Caribbean islands, bases in Greenland and Iceland, and on the strategically indispensable Panama Canal. There were few airplanes of any type to devote to these defensive missions, and those that were deployed defensively also had to serve as on the job trainers for hundreds of the raw young pilots emerging from the Air Forces burgeoning flight schools. Through the first half of 1942, all of the very few pilots and airplanes that could be spared from the defense of the U.S. coasts and sea lanes were rushed to defend Australia and the South Pacific. Dozens of precious airplanes and pilots were lost in the pathetic defense of Java, in the Netherlands East Indies, and many more were lost in the early defensive battles around Port Moresby, New Guinea, but Army Air Forces training commands were able to catch up with combat and training losses as well as with the heavy burden imposed by the formation of new fighter, bomber, and other type groups. And better fighters with a higher probability of survival began to reach operational air groups. Committing to American Air Power Fortunately, the United States could afford to be a bit late off the mark in her war against Germany. German efforts in 1940 to bring Great Britain to her knees all had failed miserably and, by the end of 1941, the bulk of Germany s air and land forces were mired in a frightful war of attrition deep inside Russia. The British had the situation in northern Europe reasonably well in hand, though they would have collapsed had not vast infusions of weapons and supplies from the United States sustained them. British forces in Egypt and Libya were teetering on the edge of defeat, but there was little the United States would be able to do for many months to influence the outcome assuming the British held on that long. So, while the Army Air Forces devoted the bulk of its limited expendable resources to defensive measures against Japan, new air groups were created, and new and better combat aircraft began rolling off newly created assembly lines. Finally, in the spring of 1942, it was decided in high Army Air Forces circles to commit American air power to northern Europe. At first, the commitment would be little more than a meager show of force masking an advanced combat training program overseen by the Royal Air Force (RAF). Only later, when training bases and factories in the United States had caught up with the planning, would the U.S. Army Air Forces take on a strategic air campaign against the German industrial heartland. Brigadier General Ira Eaker arrived in England on February 20, 1942 to establish the headquarters of the new VIII Bomber Command. He opened his headquarters at High Wycombe, England on February 23, 1942, but the VIII Bomber Command had no combat airplanes to its name; they would not be available for several months. Rather, it fell to Eaker to argue with his British hosts in favor of an independent role for the forthcoming Army Air Forces in Europe. The RAF and the British government wanted America s commitment to the air war in Europe to be subordinate to or an adjunct of the British Theatre air war. The Americans, however, felt they deserved an independent role, and it was Eaker s job to win the British over to this viewpoint. The American notion was strongly bolstered in argument, at least by the fact that the Army Air Forces had developed over many years a theoretical strategic air doctrine that was quite different from the RAF s experience based strategic doctrine. The Americans favored and had equipped their bomber force to wage a precision daylight bombing campaign against industrial targets hundreds of miles inside enemy territory. The RAF was the only other air force in the world that had developed long range, four engine, heavy bombers, but its doctrine the result of bloody experiences early in the war favored area bombing at night. Doctrinal arguments aside, the British victims of the Nazi Blitz of 1940 1941 were less squeamish than their American Allies about bombing German civilians. Besides, the RAF had few long range heavy bombers to its name, and thus felt it needed to co opt the promised infusion of American heavies. For the time being, Eaker s arguments with the RAF hierarchy were moot. There would be no American air combat units in the United Kingdom for several months, and then there would not be enough of them to make a dent in Hitler s Fortress Europa for many more months. A Symbolic Commitment between Allies The first VIII Bomber Command unit to arrive in England on May 10, 1942 was the 97th Heavy Bombardment Group, which was equipped with Boeing B 17 Flying Fortress four engine heavy bombers. This was a symbolic commitment, for the 97th had been activated in February 1942 and thus had not had time to be adequately trained to fly combat missions over heavily defended European targets. It would be months before the 97th saw any live action. Around the time the 97th Heavy Bombardment Group became the first nominal combat unit to join Eaker s VIII Bomber Command, Brig. Gen. Frank Monk Hunter arrived in England to establish the headquarters of his VIII Fighter Command, also at High Wycombe. Unlike Eaker, Hunter, a rather flamboyant World War I ace, quickly came to terms with British beliefs and aspirations regarding the employment of forthcoming American fighter groups. The RAF had opted for powerful, short range, point defense fighters that could defend friendly air bases and attack nearby enemy air bases, and its doctrine appeared to have proven itself during the Battle of Britain and the Blitz. Hunter, who had spent most of his career arguing the point defense case for the U.S. Army s fighters, was eager to augment the British fighter plan. 1 2 3 4 Next View the discussion thread. copy; Copyright 2019 Center for the National Interest All Rights Reserved
Many people have become numb to this Administration ''s wrongdoing after almost three years of constant scandal. Some feel that no matter what Trump does, he 'll never be held accountable. Why should they invest time in today ''s awful news, when it will give way in a few days or weeks without anything changing?This is the challenge the Democrats face as they open public impeachment hearings this week. Can they get the country to pay attention? Can they produce a coherent narrative that will help people understand this most serious of Trump Administration debacles?
by Ravie Lakshmanan mdash; in Security Google is finally making moves to tackle the menace that is Android malware.
Key point: The Cold War is full of examples of near nuclear disasters and those remain a threat today. What happens when you use the same satellites to control nuclear forces as well as conventional troops? Accidental nuclear war, that''s what could happen. That''s the warning by a Washington think tank, which argues that the U.S. is inviting nuclear war by using the same command and communications systems to oversee both nuclear and conventional forces. But such "dual use" systems risk an inadvertent nuclear war, because an attack on non nuclear assets, such as satellites or radars, could be perceived as an attempt to cripple America''s nuclear deterrent. The Trump administration''s draft nuclear policy already states that cyberattacks against America, or attacks on U.S. satellites, could constitute a strategic threat that merits a nuclear response. But this raises a problem called "nuclear entanglement," where the traditionally bright lines between nuclear and non nuclear systems become blurred. In a study earlier this year, the Carnegie Foundation for International Peace pointed out that Russia and China were guilty of entanglement. For example, Russia keeps nuclear submarines and bombers at the same bases as conventional ships and planes: thus a strike by conventional U.S. forces against conventional Russian forces the sort of operation common in World War II could be mistaken by Russia as an American strike on its nuclear forces, triggering Russian nuclear retaliation. China plans to attack American satellites to disable U.S. command systems and smart weapons that rely on satellite guidance, because China believes this to be a part of conventional warfare despite the Trump administration declaring otherwise. But a new Carnegie study says the U.S. is making the same mistake. "Starting in the last decade of the Cold War, the United States has increased reliance on dual use systems by assigning nonnuclear roles to C3I assets that used to be employed solely for nuclear operations," writes James Acton, co director of Carnegie''s Nuclear Policy Program. "Until the mid 1980s, for example, U.S. early warning satellites were used exclusively for detecting the launch of nuclear armed missiles. Today, they enable a variety of nonnuclear missions by, for example, providing cuing information for missile defenses involved in intercepting conventional ballistic missiles." The U.S. has also scrapped its Cold War land based communications systems for controlling nuclear forces. Which means that satellites have become virtually the only means for nuclear command and control, and those precious satellites are also handling non nuclear communications. Even as cyberwarfare and anti satellite weapons have emerged as major threats, U.S. satellite systems have become less redundant. In the 1980s and 1990s, the U.S. had two satellite based communication systems for nuclear weapons. "Today, the United States is in the process of deploying just four Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) satellites that will be the nation''s sole space based system for transmitting nuclear employment orders once legacy Milstar satellites have been retired," writes Acton. Similarly, one of two radio networks for communicating with nuclear missile submarines has been shut down. Acton explores several scenarios where the U.S. could overreact. "Russia might attack ground based or space based U.S. early warning assets to defeat European missile defenses that were proving effective in intercepting its nonnuclear missiles," he writes. "Washington might see such attacks, however, as preparations to ensure that limited nuclear strikes by Russia could penetrate the United States' homeland missile defenses." The U.S. fears that Russia could launch limited nuclear strikes to paint America into a corner, where it must either back down or risk escalating into full nuclear war. But Russia could attack dual use communications systems with the goal of disrupting the operations of U.S. conventional forces, which the U.S. might perceive as an attempt to cripple U.S. nuclear communications. These issues apply to a lesser extent to China, which knows (and the U.S. knows that China knows) that a Chinese first strike wouldn''t be powerful enough to prevent massive American retaliation. Still, a Chinese attack on, say, the Ballistic Missile Early Warning Radar system could be taken as the prelude to a Chinese nuclear strike. Recommended: Forget the F 35: The Tempest Could Be the Future Recommended: Why No Commander Wants to Take On a Spike Missile Recommended: What Will the Sixth Generation Jet Fighter Look Like? Acton does point out that the U.S. reaction will depend to some extent on context, such as whether Russia has placed its nuclear forces on alert. But this is a slender reed on which to avoid nuclear destruction. Untangling nuclear entanglement will not be easy. Russia, China and the U.S. are likely to balk at the cost of separating their nuclear and non nuclear command and control systems and facilities. Nor are they like to accept limits on weapons that threaten an opponent''s command and control systems, even if those systems have a nuclear function. Acton does suggest a few mild measures to mitigate the problem, such as more resilient command and control systems, or small space based sensors useful for detecting ICBM launches, but not for conventional warfare. The Carnegie report is particularly significant for missile defense. The proliferation of conventional ballistic missile threats against targets like ports, airfields or ships at sea means that missiles and missile defense have become an integral part of conventional warfare. This in turn means that missile defense systems have become conventional targets. Yet to attack them as part of a conventional war means scaring your opponent into fearing that this is the opening salvo of a nuclear strike. Michael Peck is a contributing writer for the National Interest. He can be found on Twitter and Facebook. This first appeared in August 2018. Image: Reuters View the discussion thread. copy; Copyright 2019 Center for the National Interest All Rights Reserved
You May Also Like: 5 Best Submarines of All Time, 5 Best Aircraft Carriers of All Time, 5 Best Battleships of All Time and Worst Submarine of All Time. Key point: The world has many hotspots that could result into global warfare. The world has avoided war between major power war since 1945, even if the United States and the Soviet Union came quite close on several occasions during the Cold War. In the first two decades following the fall of the Berlin Wall, great power war seemed virtually unimaginable. Today, with China s power still increasing and Russia s rejection of the international order apparently complete, great power conflict is back on the menu. In what is slowly becoming a tradition here at TNI (see my predictions for 2017 and 2018) what are the most dangerous flashpoints to watch in 2019? The South China Sea: The South China Sea (SCS) has become wrapped into the growing trade clash between the United States and China. For now, that conflict is playing out in exchanges of heated rhetoric, tariffs and various other trade sanctions. The United States and Canada recently escalated the conflict by arresting an executive of the Chinese technology firm Huawei, which led to counter steps by China against Canadian citizens and U.S. firms. As of yet the United States and China have not drawn a tight connection between the trade war and the ongoing disputes in the SCS. However, as relations between the two countries deteriorate, one or the other might decide to escalate beyond dollars, words and legal filings. Indeed, if China and the United States conclude that their trade relationship (which has provided the foundation of global economic growth for the last two decades) is at substantial risk, and similarly conclude that further conflict is inevitable, then either might decide to take off the gloves in the SCS. Ukraine: The world remembered Ukraine when an incident at the passage into the Sea of Azov resulted in shots fired, a ramming and the detention of two Ukrainian patrol vessels. Whether instigated by Russia or Ukraine (and both governments appear to have played some part), the interception reignited tensions in a crisis that has smoldered for the last couple of years. The declaration of martial law by the Ukrainian government suggested the possibility of unrest in Ukraine. To be sure, Russia seems to lack any interest in disrupting the status quo ahead of the Ukrainian elections, while the Ukrainian government continues to lack the capacity to consequentially change facts on the ground. The upcoming elections will probably not change the basic equation, but could introduce uncertainty. Given the continuing tensions between Russia and the United States, even a small shift could threaten the uneasy balance that has held for the last several years, potentially throwing Eastern Europe into chaos. Persian Gulf: The perpetual political and military crisis in the Middle East has settled into an uneasy tedium. Economic pressure on Iran continues to increase, as the United States take ever more aggressive steps to curtail trade. The Saudi war on Yemen shows no signs of abating, and while the Syrian Civil War has dialed down to a low, slow burn, both the United States and Russia remain committed to their partners and proxies. But like any slow burn, the conflict could reignite. Political turmoil in Iran could destabilize the region, either pushing Iran into aggressive behavior or making the Islamic Republic a tempting target for its enemies. The tensions between Kurds, Turks, Syrians and Iraqis could break into open conflict at any time. Finally, the mercurial leader of Saudi Arabia has demonstrated time and again a proclivity for risk acceptance, even as whispers about the stability of the Kingdom grow louder. Given the strategic importance of the region, any instability could lead to conflict between the United States, Russia or even China. Korean Peninsula: It is undoubtedly correct that tensions on the Korean Peninsula have declined a great deal in the last year, as Kim Jong un has demonstrated a degree of forbearance regarding nuclear and ballistic missile tests, and President Donald Trump has toned down his rhetoric about confronting North Korea. And indeed, the prospects of an enduring peace are surely brighter now than at any time since the mid 1990s. And yet serious pitfalls remain. The president has staked his prestige on an agreement with North Korea, yet by most serious accounts North Korea has not suspended, or even slowed, its production of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles. President Trump s advisors are aware of and unhappy about this fundamental contradiction. If Trump sours on Kim, if elements of the administration try to spoil any agreement, or if Kim sours on Trump, the relationship between Washington and Pyongyang could go sour very quickly. Moreover, neither China nor Japan are fully on board with reconciliation between South Korea and a fully nuclear North Korea, although their reasons for skepticism are quite different. All told, the situation in Korea remains much more dangerous than the most optimistic assessments would suggest. Unpredictable? As a colonel at the U.S. Army War College memorably phrased the problem, the United States has wrongly predicted every conflict since the Korean War. Why should we expect World War III will be any different? Great powers tend to devote diplomatic, military, and political resources to what they regard as the most serious conflicts on their plates. Less critical conflicts don t receive as much attention, meaning that they can sometimes grow into serious confrontations before anyone quite notices what s going on. Disruptive conflict could emerge in the Baltics, in Azerbaijan, in Kashmir or even in Venezuela, but the United States, China and Russia only have so much focus. If World War III comes about, it may well come from a completely unexpected direction. Final Thoughts: Is the world more dangerous today than it was a year ago? Perhaps not, although the decay of the relationship between China and the United States portends ill for the future. The flashpoints may change over time, but the fundamental foundations of conflict the decay of U.S. military hegemony and of the global international order that has accompanied it mean that the near future will likely become more hazardous than the recent past. Robert Farley, a frequent contributor to TNI, is a Visiting Professor at the United States Army War College. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government. This first appeared at the beginning of the year. Image: Reuters. View the discussion thread. copy; Copyright 2019 Center for the National Interest All Rights Reserved