Thursday, March 8, 2012

This Day in Naval History - March 07 2012

This Day in Naval History - March 07
> 1778 - Continental Navy frigate Randolph (32 guns) engages
> HMS Yarmouth (64). Randolph explodes and sinks with the loss
> of all but four men.
> 1958 - Commissioning of USS Grayback (SS 574), first
> submarine built from keel up with guided-missile capability,
> to fire Regulus II missile.
> 1960 - USS Kearsarge (CVS 33) rescues four Russian soldiers
> from their landing craft 1,000 miles from Midway Island. The
> Soldiers were drifting several weeks after their engine
> failed off Kamchatka Peninsula.
> 1966 - The Department of the Navy is reorganized into its
> present structure under the Chief of Naval Operations.
> 1967 - River Patrol Boats assist Operation Overload II in
> Rung Sat Zone, Vietnam.
> 1968 - Operation Coronado XII begins in Mekong Delta,
> Vietnam.
> 1994 - The Navy issues its first orders to women assigned
> aboard a combat ship - USS Eisenhower (CVN 69).
> NNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN
> Military Milestones from Dueling Ironclads to Flying Tigers
> by W. Thomas Smith Jr.
> 03/09/2010
> This Week in American Military History
> Mar. 8, 1965: The lead elements of 3rd Battalion, 9th
> Marines begin coming ashore at Da Nang, South Vietnam.
> Within hours, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marines will arrive aboard
> transport aircraft at the nearby airbase. The Marines of 3/9
> and 1/3 – both part of the 9th Marine Expeditionary
> Brigade – are the first of America’s ground-combat
> forces destined for offensive operations against the enemy
> in Southeast Asia, once again putting teeth in the Marine
> Corps’ claim that it is “first to fight.”
> Mar. 9, 1847: Thousands of American soldiers and a
> company-sized force of Marines (though referred to as a
> battalion) under the overall command of U.S. Army Maj. Gen.
> Winfield Scott and “Home Squadron” Commodore David E.
> Conner begin landing at Collado Beach, Mexico, just south of
> Vera Cruz.
> In what will prove to be “a model” for future amphibious
> operations, the landings are unprecedented: The largest
> American amphibious operation to date, conducted in less
> than five hours without a single loss of life.
> A portion of Conner’s dispatch to the Secretary of the
> Navy reads:
> “Gen. Scott has now with him upwards of 11,000 men. At his
> request, I permitted the Marines of the squadron, under
> Capt. [Alvin] Edson, to join him, as a part of the 3rd
> Regiment of artillery. The general-in-chief landed this
> morning, and the army put itself in motion at an early hour,
> to form its lines around the city. There has been some
> distant firing of shot and shells from the town and castle
> upon the troops as they advanced, but without result.”
> Though the landings are bloodless, grim fighting will
> continue in the Mexican-American War.
> Mar. 9, 1862: In day-two of the now-famous Battle of
> Hampton Roads (Virginia), the Confederate Navy’s ironclad
> warship, CSS Virginia (built from the remains of the
> previously scuttled frigate USS Merrimack) and her Union
> rival, the also-ironclad USS Monitor, begin exchanging shots
> in one of history’s first clashes of ironclads.
> The battle ends in a draw with both vessels inflicting
> marginal damage on one another before breaking off the
> fight: Technically it is a tactical victory for Virginia
> because she has inflicted greater damage on the blockading
> ships than they on her (Virginia had attacked and destroyed
> the Union Navy’s wooden warships USS Congress and USS
> Cumberland the previous day before the arrival of the
> Monitor). But it may also be seen as a strategic victory for
> the Union because Virginia fails to break the blockade. The
> battle however will not be remembered for which side might
> have carried the day – though that is still being debated
> – but rather the lessons learned in this particular clash
> which greatly contributed to the ongoing revolution in Naval
> tactics and ship-design and construction.
> Mar. 10, 1783: The Duc De Lauzun, a Continental Navy
> transport-vessel (laden with Spanish silver currency), and
> her escort, the frigate Alliance (the first of two so-named
> American warships), are spotted by three Royal Navy ships
> – HMS Sybil, HMS Alarm, and HMS Tobago –off Cape
> Canaveral, Florida. Sybil pursues the two American vessels,
> fires on the slow-moving Duc De Lauzun, then is aggressively
> engaged by Alliance. In less than one hour, the badly
> damaged Sybil disengages and flees, ending the last Naval
> battle of the American Revolution.
> Alliance is commanded by Capt. (future commodore) John
> Barry, who – as we said Feb. 4 – is considered in some
> circles to be “the Father of the American Navy,” though
> some would argue that title belongs to Capt. John Paul
> Jones.
> Mar. 11, 1862: President Abraham Lincoln –
> frustrated over Union Army Gen. George B. McClellan’s
> unwillingness to attack the Confederate Army – relieves
> McClellan of his post as general-in-chief of the U.S. Army,
> but keeps him on as commanding general of the Army of the
> Potomac. McClellan – who will lose his command after
> failing to destroy Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee’s
> wounded army following the Battle of Antietam – becomes
> the second well-known casualty in Lincoln’s series of
> firing, hiring, and firing generals until the Union Army
> (like the already well-commanded Confederate Army) is led by
> some of the most able generals in American military history.
>
> Mar. 11, 1943: “The Flying Tigers” – the famous
> volunteer group of American fighter pilots contracted to the
> Chinese Air Force during World War II and ultimately brought
> under U.S. Army Air Forces command as the China Air Task
> Force – is absorbed into the 14th Air Force.
> Commanded by Gen. Claire L. Chennault, “the Flying
> Tigers” were so-named because of the tiger-shark faces
> painted on the noses of their P-40 fighters.
> Today, according to the U.S. Air Force, airmen of the 14th
> Air Force are “the day-to-day operators of Air Force Space
> Command's space forces.” And the centerpiece of the 14th
> Air Force emblem is a tiger with wings.
> NNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN
>
> Pretty good............
> --- On Mon, 3/5/12, Dale Jensen <socalhuskerfan@yahoo.com>
> wrote:
> From: Dale Jensen <socalhuskerfan@yahoo.com>
> Subject: Singing the Blues
> Date: Monday, March 5, 2012, 8:39 AM
> HOW TO SING THE BLUES
> (attributed to Memphis Earlene Gray with help from Uncle
> Plunky - whoever they are)
>
> 1. Most blues begin "woke up this morning."
> 2. "I got a good woman" is a bad way to begin the
> blues, unless you stick something nasty in the next line:
> "I got a good woman with the meanest dog in town."
> 3. Blues are simple. After you have the first
> line right, repeat it then find something that rhymes, sort
> of:
> " Got a good woman with the meanest dog in town
> He got teeth like Margaret Thatcher and weighs 500 pounds."
> 4. The blues are not about limitless
> choices
> 5. Blues cars are Chevvies and
> Cadillacs. Other acceptable Blues transportation is
> Greyhound Bus or southbound train. Walkin' plays a
> major part in the blues lifestyle. So does fixin' to
> die.
> 6. Teenagers can't sing the blues.
> Adults sing the blues. Blues adulthood means old
> enough to get the electric chair if you shoot a man in
> Memphis.
> 7. You can have the blues in New York City, but not in
> Brooklyn or Queens.
> Hard times in Vermont or North Dakota is just depression.
> Chicago, St. Louis and Kansas City are still the best places
> to have the blues.
> 8. The following colors do not belong in
> the blues:
> a. violet
> b. beige
> c. mauve
> 9.You can't have the blues in an office or a shopping mall:
> the lighting is all wrong
> 10. Good places for the blues:
> a. the highway
> b. the jailhouse
> c. the empty bed
> Bad places:
> a. tanning salon
> b. gallery openings
> c. weekend in the Hamptons
> 11. No one will believe it’s the blues if you
> wear a suit unless you are an old black man.
> 12. Do you have the right to sing the
> blues?
> yes if:
> a. your first name is a southern state - like Georgia
> b. you're blind
> c. you shot a man in Memphis
> d. you can't be satisfied
> no if:
> a. you once were blind but now can see
> b. you're deaf
> c. you have a trust fund
> 13. Neither Julio Inglesias nor Barbra
> Streisand can sing the blues
> 14. If you ask for water and Baby give you
> gasoline, it’s the blues
> Other blues beverages:
> a. wine
> b. Irish whiskey
> c. muddy water
> Blues beverages are NOT:
> a. any mixed drink
> b. any wine kosher for Passover
> c. Yoo Hoo (all flavors)
> 15. if it occurs in a cheap motel or a shotgun shack,
> it's a blues death. Stabbed in the back by a jealous
> lover is a blues way to die. So is the electric chair,
> substance abuse, or being denied treatment in an emergency
> room. It is not a blues death if you die during a
> liposuction treatment.
> 16. Some blues names for women:
> a. Sadie
> b. Big mama
> c. Bessie
> 17. Some blues names for men"
> a. Joe
> b. Willie
> c. Little Willie
> d. Lightning
> Persons with names like Sierra or Sequoia will not be
> permitted to sing the blues no matter how many men they
> shoot in Memphis
> NNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN
> From The WSJ
> Fukushima and the Future of Nuclear Power
> There's no evidence that low doses of radiation are harmful
> and no reason to paralyze our economy out of fear of nuclear
> power.
> By WILLIAM TUCKER
> In the early 1980s, a Taiwan steel company accidentally
> mixed some highly radioactive cobalt-60 into a batch of
> steel rebar. The radioactive rods were then used in the
> construction of 1,700 apartments. As a result, people living
> in these buildings were subject to radiation up to 30 times
> the normal amount received from the natural background.
> When dismayed officials discovered this enormous error 15
> years later, they surveyed past and present apartment
> dwellers expecting to find an epidemic of cancer. Normal
> incidence would have predicted 160 cancers among the 10,000
> residents. To their astonishment, the researchers discovered
> only five cases of cancer—97% lower than the anticipated
> amount. Birth defects were also 94% below the anticipated
> rate. These findings were published in the Journal of
> American Physicians and Surgeons in 2004. As one researcher
> phrased it, exposure to high levels of background radiation
> had apparently bestowed upon residents "an effective
> immunity from cancer."
> The incident illustrates the enormous gap that has grown
> between radiation science and the popular perception of the
> dangers of nuclear power. One year after Japan's Fukushima
> accident, much of the world is running away from nuclear
> energy on the grounds that its risks are too great for a
> modern society to bear.
> Germany has reinstituted plans to close down all its
> reactors by 2022, even if it means importing huge quantities
> of natural gas from Russia and nuclear-generated electricity
> from France and the Czech Republic. Japan has taken all of
> its 54 reactors out of service with the possibility that
> they may never run again. The result has been a complete
> reversal of Japan's trade balance from 20 years of surpluses
> to a record $18 billion deficit. Oil and liquid natural gas
> imports have increased dramatically while factories have
> slowed because of power shortages.
> In the United States, the reaction so far has been less
> severe. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has increased its
> vigilance and is under tremendous pressure to close down
> aging reactors such as Vermont Yankee in southeastern
> Vermont and Indian Point north of New York City. But the NRC
> did issue its first new license in 30 years for two
> Westinghouse AP1000 reactors at the Vogtle plant in eastern
> Georgia. Construction is expected to begin soon. Still, it's
> a far cry from the 30 to 100 new reactors that were being
> touted a year ago as part of America's "nuclear
> renaissance."
> Meanwhile, 100 coal plants have been shut down in the U.S.
> over concerns about mercury and carbon emissions while the
> "renewables," solar and wind, that are supposed to take
> their place are proving to be much more intractable and
> land-consuming than previously imagined. With so much
> economic damage in the wake of Fukushima, it might behoove
> the world to ponder what the dangers of nuclear energy
> really are.
> All 54 of Japan's reactors absorbed an earthquake of 9.0 on
> the Richter scale—the biggest in Japan's recorded history.
> Though the shock exceeded design specifications, the steel
> reactor vessels and concrete containment structures remained
> intact. The problem occurred when the subsequent 50-foot
> tsunami wiped out the backup generators at Fukushima,
> crippling the cooling system and causing the four operating
> reactors to overheat.
> The core of three reactors melted down, but that in itself
> is not a public catastrophe as long as the reactor vessel
> and containment structure hold. All the radiation releases
> have come from contaminated cooling water and steam vented
> or escaping into the environment. Other releases came from
> the spent fuel pools, which also lost some of their coolant
> and proved to be a greater danger.
> Nuclear engineers have long recognized these
> vulnerabilities. The AP1000 being built in Georgia is
> specifically designed with a "passive" cooling system that
> relies on natural convection currents rather than electric
> pumps so the reactors can cool themselves for several days
> while waiting for power to be restored. Spent fuel rods at
> existing reactors will be moved inside the containment
> structure wherever possible or into dry casks where they do
> not require cooling. All this takes time and expense but
> will be a necessary step toward improving nuclear safety.
> The real problem, however, may be in the public's
> overestimation of the danger posed by small exposures to
> radiation. In order to avoid any possible charge of
> negligence, regulatory bodies around the world have adopted
> what is called a "linear-no-threshold" or "no safe dose"
> standard for radiation safety.
> This says, quite simply, that because huge doses of
> radiation—the kind you might get from standing in the same
> room with a spent fuel rod—can cause illness or cancer, we
> must assume that even the smallest doses will have the same
> effect on a smaller scale. It's exactly the same as saying
> that because jumping off a 10-story building will break
> every bone in your body, stepping off a one-foot curb will
> also cause some minor damage.
> So far there have been zero fatalities or adverse health
> effects from radiation exposure at Fukushima. All the damage
> has been from depression, despair and even suicide among the
> 100,000 people who have been evacuated from their homes
> within a 12-mile radius.
> Some of these people are even being shunned in their new
> locales under the bizarre supposition that they constitute a
> radioactive danger. Yet as Ted Rockwell, one of the most
> notable veterans of the Manhattan Project, points out,
> people around the world live with radiation levels much
> higher than is present in the evacuation zone without
> showing any ill effects. The residents of the Taiwan
> apartments experienced 10 times the level of radiation as is
> prevalent in the evacuation zone.
> The etiology of radiation-related disease is well-known.
> Radiation can cause DNA damage but the body has repair
> mechanisms to deal with it. Last December scientists at
> Berkeley made microscopic videotapes of these cellular
> repair sites in action. "Our data show that at lower doses
> of ionizing radiation, DNA repair mechanisms work much
> better than at higher doses," wrote Mina Bissell, a
> world-renowned breast cancer researcher who co-authored the
> report. "This non-linear DNA damage response casts doubt on
> the general assumption that any amount of ionizing radiation
> is harmful and additive."
> Other researchers speculate that low radiation doses may
> immunize the body against cancer and birth defects by
> stimulating these repair mechanisms into greater
> responsiveness, just as vaccines stimulate the immune
> system. That would explain the low cancer rates in Taiwan.
> As long as government agencies around the world continue to
> operate under the premise that even the smallest exposures
> to ionizing radiation can be harmful, Germany and Japan will
> go on dismembering their economies while countries such as
> the U.S. attempt to straddle the widening gap between
> outlawed coal and a renewables future whose promise now
> appears greatly exaggerated.
> Taking a clear-eyed look at the actual dangers of nuclear
> energy seems like a much more sensible course.
> Mr. Tucker is author of "Terrestrial Energy: How Nuclear
> Power Will Lead the Green Revolution and End America's
> Energy Odyssey" (Bartleby Press, 2010).
> NNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN
> Thanks to Lee
> EXERCISE FOR PEOPLE OVER 50
> Begin by standing on a comfortable surface, where you have
> plenty of room at each side.
> With a 5-lb potato bag in each hand, extend your arms
> straight out from your sides and hold them there as long as
> you can. Try to reach a full minute and then relax.
> Each day you'll find that you can hold this position for
> just a bit longer. After a couple of weeks, move up to 10-lb
> potato bags.
> Then try 50-lb potato bags and then eventually try to get to
> where you can lift a 100-lb potato bag in each hand and hold
> your arms straight for more than a full minute. (I'm at this
> level.)
> After you feel confident at that level, put a potato in each
> bag.
>
> NNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> Item Number:1 Date: 03/07/2012 AFGHANISTAN - BLAST KILLS 6
> BRITISH TROOPS (MAR 07/BBC) BRITISH BROADCASTING CORP.
> -- Six British soldiers have been killed in an explosion in
> southern Afghanistan, reports the BBC. The
> troops were patrolling in a Warrior armored vehicle on
> Tuesday when they struck either a Soviet-era anti-tank mine
> or an improvised explosive device, said
> officials. The incident took place in
> Kandahar province, near the border with
> Helmand. Five of the troops were from 3rd
> Battalion, the Yorkshire Regiment, and one from 1st
> Battalion, The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment, said the
> Ministry of Defense. This represented the
> largest single loss of British lives in Afghanistan since
> 2006. A total of 404 have been killed since 2001
>  Item Number:2 Date: 03/07/2012 AFGHANISTAN - NIGHT RAIDS
> BEING LED BY AFGHANS (MAR 07/UPI) UNITED PRESS
> INTERNATIONAL -- The commander of the U.S. Joint Special
> Operations Command says that Afghan forces are now taking
> the lead in nighttime raids against insurgents, UPI
> reports. Such raids target senior-level
> militants, often after coalition and Afghan forces have
> tracked their targets for weeks, Navy Adm. William McRaven
> told the Senate Armed Services Committee on
> Tuesday. Insurgents are easier to reach at
> that time and fewer villagers are liable to be hurt during
> night raids, he said. While Afghanis have
> criticized such night raids in the past, ensuring that their
> troops are now "the first forces through the door" has
> helped the situation, said McRaven
>  Item Number:3 Date: 03/07/2012 AUSTRALIA - MAJOR DEFENSE
> FIRM UNDER THE GUN IN BRIBERY INVESTIGATION (MAR
> 07/SMH) SYDNEY MORNING HERALD -- Federal police say
> Tenix Defence, Australia's largest defense contractor, is
> being investigating over allegations that the company bribed
> officials in Asia to win major contracts, reports the Sydney
> Morning Herald. The company is suspected of
> channeling several million dollars in kickbacks through
> agents hired to win defense contracts in a number of
> countries, including Indonesia and the Philippines, between
> 2001 and 2008, said police. A police
> spokesman said the agency had "received a referral in 2009
> for alleged improper payments made by multinational staff
> members to secure contracts in the Asia
> region." One contract with the Philippine
> government that is being probed was underwritten by an
> Aus$109 million (US$117 million) guarantee from the
> Australian government. Police said the deal
> in 2001-2002 to supply six search-and-rescue vessels for the
> Philippine coast guard has been linked to alleged bribes to
> officials and politicians, including a Cabinet minister
>  Item Number:4 Date: 03/07/2012 BANGLADESH - SAUDI DIPLOMAT
> KILLED IN DHAKA (MAR 07/ALJAZ) AL JAZEERA -- Police
> are investigating the shooting death of a Saudi diplomat in
> the capital of Bangladesh, reports Al Jazeera
> (Qatar). Khalak al-Ali was found alive on
> Tuesday near his home in Dhaka's district of Gulshan with a
> bullet wound in his chest, police said. He was taken
> to the hospital but died there, said medical
> officials. There were no bloodstains where
> the body was found, leading to speculation that the diplomat
> was shot elsewhere and dumped on the road, said
> police. A Bangladeshi government
> spokeswoman said diplomatic relations with the Saudis would
> not be affected, reported CNN
>  Item Number:5 Date: 03/07/2012 CHINA - DEAL NEAR ON
> PURCHASE OF 48 SU-35 FIGHTERS (MAR 07/INT-AVN)
> INTERFAX-MILITARY NEWS AGENCY -- China and Russia are said
> to be the final stages of negotiations for dozens of the
> latest Russian-made Sukhoi fighters, reports Interfax-AVN
> (Russia). A US$4 billion contract for 48
> Su-35 fighter jets is close to be finalized, according to
> the Russian Kommersant newspaper. Such a
> deal would be the largest between Russia and China in recent
> years. Sources indicated that Moscow has
> been holding out for legal guarantees that its intellectual
> property rights will not be violated. While
> Moscow hopes secure a place in the Chinese market, it also
> is trying to prevent the reverse-engineering of the fighter
> design by China, a Russian government source told
> Kommersant.
> Item Number:6 Date: 03/07/2012 INDIA - CARRIER FACES SEA
> TRIALS THIS MONTH (MAR 07/BARENTS) BARENTS OBSERVER --
> A former Soviet aircraft carrier that has been purchased by
> India is expected to begin trials in the Barents Sea this
> month, reports the Barents Observer. The
> Vikramaditya will then conduct a 3.5-month shakedown cruise
> before being delivered to the Indian navy on Dec. 4,
> according to an unnamed source cited by
> Itar-Tass. India purchased the aircraft
> carrier in 2004 for refurbishment, but delivery has been
> repeatedly delayed and the costs have
> mounted. MiG-29K carrier aircraft were also
> bought to equip the carrier.
> Item Number:7 Date: 03/07/2012 INDIA - JOURNALIST ARRESTED,
> LINKED TO BOMBING (MAR 07/PTI) PRESS TRUST OF INDIA --
> Police in New Delhi have arrested an Indian journalist in
> connection with the bombing of an Israeli diplomatic vehicle
> in New Delhi last month, reports the Press Trust of
> India. The journalist is of Iranian
> descent, noted Israeli media. Syed Mohammed
> Ahmad Kazmi, a freelancer who works for an Iranian news
> outlet, was accused of playing an integral role in plotting
> the attack, police said. A New Delhi court
> remanded him to custody on Wednesday for 20 days.
> Several people were wounded in the Feb. 13 incident. A
> similar explosive device was found on an Israeli diplomatic
> car in Tbilisi, Georgia. Israeli blamed the
> Indian attack on Iran.
>  Item Number:8 Date: 03/07/2012 ISRAEL - HAMAS LEADERS SAY
> GROUP WON'T SUPPORT IRAN IN POTENTIAL CONFLICT WITH ISRAEL
> (MAR 07/ARUTZ) ARUTZ SHEVA -- A senior Hamas leader
> says his group will not become involved in a potential war
> between Israel and Iran, reports Arutz Sheva
> (Israel). Salah Bardawil, a member of the
> Hamas political bureau, told the Guardian (U.K.) that the
> group would not obey orders from Tehran to launch rockets
> into Israel, even if Israel attacked
> Iran. Another senior Hamas official echoed
> the remarks. Hamas has governed Gaza since
> 2007. Hamas has never given "complete
> loyalty" to Tehran, Bardawil said. He pointed out that Iran
> is overwhelmingly Shi'ite, while the population of Gaza is
> Sunni. Tehran recently reportedly withdrew
> its financial support to Hamas, estimated at US$23 million
> per month, over its refusal to support Syrian President
> Bashar Assad
> Item Number:9 Date: 03/07/2012 ISRAEL - NETANYAHU SEEKS
> BUNKER BUSTERS, REFUELING AIRCRAFT (MAR 07/HA) HAARETZ
> -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has sought
> approval to buy advanced refueling aircraft and GBU-28
> bunker-busting bombs from the U.S., reports Ha'aretz
> (Israel). The request was made during the
> prime minister's meeting with U.S. Defense Secretary Leon
> Panetta, a top U.S. official said on
> Tuesday. President Obama told Panetta to
> work directly with Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak on
> the matter, the official said. The former
> Bush administration declined to sell such weapons and
> aircraft to Israel. Such weapons would be
> key to any strike on Iran's nuclear facilities
>  Item Number:10 Date: 03/07/2012 ISRAEL - TUNNELS USED BY
> HAMAS, HEZBOLLAH PROMPT SPECIAL TRAINING (MAR 07/HA)
> HAARETZ -- Special operations personnel have been training
> at a new Israeli underground training facility to prepare
> for conflicts with Hezbollah or Hamas, reports Ha'aretz
> (Israel). Underground tunnel systems have
> been used by those groups to smuggle weapons and launch
> attacks, said Israeli officials. The
> training is derived on lessons learned from the Second
> Lebanon War in 2006 and the Gaza invasion in 2009, said
> officials
> Item Number:11 Date: 03/07/2012 KENYA - MILITARY SUGGESTS IT
> COULD LEAVE SOMALIA IN OCTOBER (MAR 07/CFM) CAPITAL FM
> (NAIROBI) -- The Kenyan military says its operation against
> Al-Shabaab in Somalia may conclude by the end of October,
> reports Capital FM (Nairobi). Kenya is
> operating under the mandate of the African Union Mission in
> Somalia (AMISOM), which expires on Oct. 31, 2012, the
> spokesman said on Saturday. Unless that
> mandate is extended, Kenya will withdraw, the spokesman
> said. However, Kenya expects to stay in
> Somalia until the security situation improves, he
> said. Once the AMISOM mandate expires, a
> new peacekeeping mission will likely be formed. Kenya
> expects to participate in such a mission, he said
>  Item Number:12 Date: 03/07/2012 NAMIBIA - TALKS WITH
> ANGOLANS FOCUS ON CRIME, BORDER ISSUES (MAR 07/APA)
> ANGOLA PRESS AGENCY -- An Angolan military delegation is in
> Namibia to discuss crime and other border issues, reports
> the Angola Press Agency. On the agenda for
> this week's talks are a number of issues related to criminal
> activity along the mutual border. The
> delegation will also inspect the frontier area, said Gen.
> Fernando Helder Pita Gros, the head of the Angolan mission.
>
>  Item Number:13 Date: 03/07/2012 NICARAGUA - PATROL UNITS
> CONFISCATE 2 TONS OF COCAINE IN CARIBBEAN (MAR 07/EFE)
> EFE NEWS SERVICE -- The Nicaraguan navy reports seizing more
> than two tons of cocaine in an operation on the southern
> Caribbean coast, according to EFE
> (Spain). Early on Sunday, Nicaraguan patrol
> units chased a go-fast boat, said Rear Adm. Roger Gonzalez,
> the navy commander. The smugglers then
> abandoned their boat and left behind the illegal drugs, he
> said. Naval personnel reportedly found 95 sacks, each with
> 25 packets of cocaine. The smugglers may be
> linked to the Aragon group, which lost a similar shipment in
> the region two weeks ago, the admiral said on Monday
>  Item Number:14 Date: 03/07/2012 NORWAY - MILITARIES FROM 15
> NATIONS TRAIN TOGETHER IN WINTER CONDITIONS (MAR
> 07/BARENTS) BARENTS OBSERVER -- Norway is about to
> begin largest military exercise in a decade, with a
> multinational drill in the northern part of the country,
> reports the Barents Observer. Following
> preparations this week, the active component of the Cold
> Response drill will take place in the Nordland and Troms
> counties from March 12 to 21, according to the Norwegian
> Ministry of Defense. The exercise is
> designed to simulate high-intensity winter operations by
> NATO nations under a United Nations mandate, officials
> said. On the training agenda are deploying and
> employing reaction forces in a crisis area, including
> high-intensity warfare, counterterrorism and mass
> demonstration operations, said the
> ministry. More than 16,000 personnel from
> 15 nations are expected, with the largest contingents from
> Canada, France, the Netherlands, Sweden, the U.K. and the
> United States.
>  Item Number:15 Date: 03/07/2012 PHILIPPINES - AIR FORCE
> PHASES IN MODERNIZATION EFFORTS (MAR 07/PHILSTAR)
> PHILIPPINE STAR -- The Philippine air force hopes to
> purchase a range of aircraft and radar equipment by 2016,
> aiming to boost its territorial defense capabilities,
> reports the Philippine Star. Modernization
> is taking place in phases. The completed first phase was
> aimed at improving the military's capability to conduct
> internal security operations Six attack
> jets and trainers, a long-range patrol aircraft, an air
> defense radar and a special mission aircraft are due to be
> delivered beginning this year, said a service spokesman.
> That equipment is part of the second
> phase. That phase also anticipates the
> acquisition of eight helicopters, seven attack helicopters,
> a C-130 cargo plane, a long-range patrol aircraft and 18
> basic trainer planes under this phase, said the air force
> officer. The third phase of the
> modernization, to be implemented after 2016, will include
> deliveries of advanced multi-role fighter jets and
> long-range patrol aircraft and radars, the spokesman said
>  Item Number:16 Date: 03/07/2012 POLAND - SURFACE-TO-AIR
> MISSILES TO GET NEW LEASE ON LIFE (MAR 07/DN) DEFENSE
> NEWS -- The Ministry of Defense has decided to upgrade six
> squadrons of Polish medium-range surface-to-air missile
> systems, reports Defense News. The
> modernization of the Russian-built S-125SC Newa missiles
> will extend their service lives by 10-12 years, said
> Poland's Deputy Defense Minister Czeslaw
> Piatas. New short-range missile systems
> will also be purchased, said the
> minister. The upgrade program is expected
> to cost at least US$98 million, reported the weekly Polska
> Zbrojna military newspaper. Official
> documents also reveal plans to buy Poprad self-propelled air
> defense systems armed with Grom missiles
> Item Number:17 Date: 03/07/2012 SEYCHELLES - AFTER REPEATED
> MOVES, SOMALI PIRATES FACE TRIAL (MAR 07/NYT) NEW YORK
> TIMES -- After several transfers, 15 Somali pirates are in
> the Seychelles to stand trial for hijacking an Iranian
> fishing vessel in January, reports the New York
> Times. The Somalis were captured by the
> U.S. Navy. Somalia, Iran and the United States did not want
> to prosecute. The Seychelles had no more
> space in its prison system, said
> officials. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary
> Clinton and Seychelles President James Michel have recently
> come to an agreement to transfer several previously
> convicted Somali pirates to a U.N.-financed prison in
> Somaliland, freeing up room in the Seychelles, said a senior
> State Dept. official. Since the capture of
> the suspects, they have been held aboard three U.S. nuclear
> aircraft carriers, two destroyers and an amphibious warship
> before being brought ashore in Djibouti on Tuesday to fly to
> the Seychelles, said a senior Navy official.
>  Item Number:18 Date: 03/07/2012 SOUTH SUDAN - TROOPS READY
> DISARMAMENT CAMPAIGN IN JONGLEI STATE (MAR 07/VOA)
> VOICE OF AMERICA NEWS -- The army in South Sudan is about to
> launch a disarmament program in new nation's eastern Jonglei
> state, reports the Voice of America
> News. The government is trying to disarm
> groups of cattle raiders blamed for violent attacks in the
> region. Military officials said that South
> Sudanese troops will deploy in Jonglei this week as part of
> an attempt to collect 20,000 small arms from the Murle and
> Lou Nuer tribes. The tribes have been involved in a string
> of retaliatory cattle raids. While the goal
> is to collect the weapons without violence, the army is
> prepared to use force in necessary, said a service
> spokesman.
>  Item Number:19 Date: 03/07/2012 SUDAN - SECURITY COUNCIL
> URGES CEASE-FIRE (MAR 07/UNNC) U.N. NEWS CENTER -- The
> United Nations Security Council has called on Sudan and
> South Sudan to end their cross-border hostilities, reports
> the U.N. News Service. On Tuesday, the
> council urged all parties to "cease military operations in
> the border areas and put an end to the cycle of
> violence." Tensions over unresolved border
> disputes have led to fighting between Sudanese armed forces
> and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) in
> Sudan's South Kordofan and Blue Nile
> states. Airstrikes have also been reported
> in South Sudan's Unity state.
>  Item Number:20 Date: 03/07/2012 SWEDEN - REPORT CHARGES
> THAT DEFENSE RESEARCH AGENCY ASSISTED SAUDI ARMS FACTORY
> (MAR 07/AFP) AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE -- A Swedish agency
> has secretly been providing military assistance to Saudi
> Arabia, according to Swedish public
> radio. Since 2007, the Defense Research
> Agency (FOI) has been helping Saudi Arabia build an arms
> factory to produce anti-tank missiles, reports Agence
> France-Presse. Construction on so-called
> Project Simoom has reportedly yet to begin. The station
> cited hundreds of classified documents and
> interviews. To avoid direct links, the
> agency set up a shell company to handle dealings with Saudi
> Arabia, according to the radio report. The
> agency's director-general denied the project's existence
> Item Number:21 Date: 03/07/2012 THAILAND - EMERGENCY
> MEASURES IN SOUTH TO BE GRADUALLY PHASED OUT (MAR
> 07/BANGPOST) BANGKOK POST -- A top government official
> says the emergency measures in place in Thailand's three
> southern provinces will be gradually lifted and replaced by
> provisions of the Internal Security Act, reports the Bangkok
> Post. Those areas that can show decreased
> Islamist insurgent activity and improved living conditions
> will be eligible for the change in status, said Deputy Prime
> Minister Yutthasak Sasiprapa on
> Tuesday. Yutthasak said he expects to be
> appointed chairman of the executive committee of the
> Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC) in the southern
> region. He said will integrate the
> operations of ISOC, the Southern Border Provinces
> Administration Center (SBPAC) and
> police. At that point, the ISOC would
> determine where the emergency measures could be lifted, said
> the minister.
>  Item Number:22 Date: 03/07/2012 USA - FOLLOWING LENGTHY
> REFIT, CARRIER HEADS FOR NEW HOME IN WASH. (MAR
> 07/KITSAP) KITSAP SUN -- The aircraft carrier Nimitz
> aircraft carrier is on the way to her new
> homeport. The USS Nimitz has just completed
> a year-long refit at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Wash.,
> reports the Kitsap (Wash.) Sun. The $239
> million modernization included upgrades to the carrier's
> self-defense, combat, navigation and potable water systems,
> said Navy officials. Completion was delayed
> for two months after additional maintenance work was
> identified, according to a ship
> spokeswoman. The crew conducted dock trials
> last week before setting sail on Monday to Naval Station
> Everett, Wash
>  Item Number:23 Date: 03/07/2012 USA - OFFICIALS CITE
> EFFECTIVENESS OF ARMY DOUBLE-V HULL STRYKERS (MAR
> 07/ANS) ARMY NEWS SERVICE -- By the end of the year,
> the U.S. Army expects to have more than 760 Stryker Double-V
> Hull (DVH) armored vehicles, reports the Army News
> Service. There are currently about 300
> Stryker DVHs in theater. Adding more vehicles will fill out
> two more brigades, said Army acquisition
> officials. Army officials told reporters in
> Washington this week that the DVHs have done an effective
> job. The DVH has hit roadside bombs about
> 40 times; in all but two incidents, soldiers suffered only
> minor injuries, said the
> officials. Flat-bottom Strykers are also
> being used, including the nuclear, biological, chemical,
> reconnaissance vehicle (NBC RV) variant and the mobile gun
> system (MGS) version. They can be equipped with an underbody
> kit to provide extra protection, the officials said
> Item Number:24 Date: 03/07/2012 USA - ROBOTIC 'CHEETAH' SETS
> SPEED RECORD IN PENTAGON-FUNDED PROGRAM (MAR 07/) -- A
> robot developed by the Defense Advanced Research Projects
> Agency (DARPA) has just set a new land speed record for
> legged robots. The Cheetah robot, part of
> the Maximum Mobility and Manipulation (M3) program, achieved
> speeds up to 18 mph (29 kmh), beating the previous record of
> 13 mph (21 kmh) set in 1989 at MIT, said a release from
> DARPA, the Pentagon's research agency. The
> robot's movements mimic those of fast-running animals --
> increasing its stride and running speed by flexing and
> un-flexing its back on each step, say DARPA officials.
> The current robotic version runs on a laboratory treadmill
> where it is powered by an off-board hydraulic pump. The
> Cheetah also uses a boom-like device to keep it running in
> the center of the treadmill. Testing of a
> free-running prototype is planned for later this year, said
> DARPA. The robot was built by Boston
> Dynamics in Massachusetts.
>

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