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Old 12-06-2005, 05:57 AM
truebeliever truebeliever is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2005
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Default Janes Defence Website Thread.

"Janes" is one of those "insider" information points that have to tell the truth to their readers. Just read between the lines.

This months special reports...

US dumps bunker-buster - or not?

In late October, US Congressional leaders agreed to withhold USD4 million requested by the US administration to complete pre-engineering studies into the Robust Nuclear Earth Penetrator (RNEP). Although it has been widely reported that the programme has now been cancelled, there is evidence that the RNEP project may yet continue under a new name.

The body in charge of US nuclear weapons programmes, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), which operates within the US Department of Energy, has stated it wants to complete the RNEP study at Sandia National Laboratories, New Mexico, as planned, but with Pentagon funding. It proposes renaming the study. Although the NNSA had asked to drop Energy Department funding, reflecting a "change in policy" favouring research into conventional penetrator options, the nuclear option may not have been abandoned. The RNEP programme may be as much motivated by the development of new technology directly applicable to a new generation of lower-yield nuclear weapons, as by the perceived military need for a weapon that is able to destroy hard and deeply buried targets (HDBTs).

The conventional weapon is to undergo a 'sled test' early in 2006, in which a mock warhead will be slammed into a huge block of concrete at high speed to test impact. The results could guide government policy to fully developing either a conventional or nuclear earth penetrator. Much depends on whether the penetrator shell contains a mock nuclear warhead, as originally planned, or a mock conventional warhead. A mock nuclear warhead would signal the intention to continue the RNEP programme under a conventional guise. However, some insiders believe that further attempts to get additional funding approved in Congress may come up against the same obstacles as before.
US rifle programme hits further delay

By Joshua Kucera JDW Staff Reporter
Washington, DC

The competition for the US Army's next-generation infantry weapons has been cancelled to give the army and other services more time to look at lessons learned from the continuing operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The competition for the Objective Individual Combat Weapon (OICW) Increment 1 had already been suspended earlier in 2005 so that a preliminary investigation could take place about whether other services, primarily the US Marine Corps, should also participate. A requirements board under the office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has determined that it should be a joint programme, said Rich Audette, the army's deputy programme manager for soldier weapons.

Among the developments from Iraq that programme officers are looking at is the advanced age of some of the M249s in use today, said Major Glenn Dean, chief of the small arms division for the director of combat developments at the army's Infantry Center. "Those weapons are getting old, they have not aged well," he said.

In addition, there has been an increasing realisation of the need for weapons smaller than the M16 for truck drivers and other support troops, Maj Dean said.
Mossad's Kurdish dilemma

There can be no doubt that the Islamic Republic is a top priority for Israel's foreign intelligence and counterterrorism service, Mossad. In addition to fears that Tehran may have ambitions to acquire or develop its own nuclear capability, Israeli security chiefs are also concerned about Iran's development of long-range delivery platforms that might bring Israel within the range of such weapons. Although similar concerns have existed for some years, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's recent endorsement of the call for the destruction of the State of Israel has led to demands that the national security threat posed by Iran should be addressed by Mossad as a matter of urgency.

At present, one of Israel's most productive sources of intelligence on Iran is the mountainous Kurdish enclave in northern Iraq. This region borders Iran and there is significant cross-border movement of both individuals and intelligence.

In mid-2003, rumours started circulating in the media that Mossad was re-establishing its intelligence operations in northern Iraq. At the time, both Israeli and Kurdish officials denied these reports. However, given the historic links between Mossad and the Iraqi Kurds - and mounting concerns over Iranian militancy - few informed insiders make much effort to deny that there is a basis of truth in these stories. There is also evidence to suggest that Mossad has become more active in building ties with the Syrian Kurdish opposition.
US Air Force unveils hand-held laser gun

By Michael Sirak JDW Staff Reporter
Washington, DC

The US Air Force has unveiled its first hand-held laser weapon that gives security forces a non-lethal option for controlling crowds and protecting areas like checkpoints, according to service officials.

While only in prototype form and years away from fielding, the weapon, known as the Personnel Halting and Stimulation Response (PHaSR) system, holds great promise, they said.

The PHaSR is about the same size and weight of a fully loaded M60 machine gun - around 9 kg - but shoots a low-power beam of laser light instead of bullets. The light it generates is capable of temporarily impairing an individual's vision, much like the disorienting glare one sees when looking into the sun, said the officials.

Upon completion of testing, one prototype will be handed over to the Department of Defense's Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Directorate (JNLWD) and the second to the National Institute of Justice (NIJ): the law enforcement arm of the US Department of Justice. Both organisations support the programme, with the latter interested in its civil applications.
Counterterrorism co-operation is endangered by US renditions

By Andrew Koch

Vital global counterterrorism co-operation is under threat in the wake of several international inquiries into the US government practice of sending terrorism suspects to third countries outside the established legal framework, known as 'extraordinary renditions'. These inquires could also see US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operatives face legal action.

At issue is the US practice of rendition, which includes such missions as "snatch and grab" operations, as well as the shipment of prisoners already in the custody of one state to another for arrest, detention or interrogation - outside the lines of regular extradition processes.

The missions are typically carried out by CIA or Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) officers and have involved scores of suspects. Egypt alone has received "60 or 70" terrorist suspects from the US, Ahmed Nazif, the Egyptian Prime Minister, said in May.

US activities probed

With law enforcement agencies and parliamentary committees in Canada, Germany, Italy, and Sweden probing US renditions activities, the usually good co-operation the intelligence agencies of those governments have with Washington is at risk, US officials said. Although there is little chance any of the personnel will be arrested, several high-ranking US national security officials interviewed by JIR said such co-operation is in danger of being damaged. They noted the lessons of investigating the London and Madrid bombings show the importance of such co-operation. The CIA's inspector general is also reviewing at least half a dozen cases against agency employees for their actions in detention and interrogation of prisoners but they are unrelated to the other countries' investigations.
Israel's anti-ballistic missile test pushes altitude boundaries

By Alon Ben-David JDW Correspondent
Tel Aviv

Israel's anti-ballistic missile Arrow Weapon System (AWS) successfully intercepted a target simulating an Iranian Shahab-3 medium-range ballistic missile (MRBM) in a test over the Mediterranean on 2 December.

The interception was conducted at a record low altitude, considered below the AWS's performance envelope, and determined the operability of the Arrow II Block 3 interceptor, manufactured jointly by Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) and Boeing Integrated Defense Systems.

"We have never before tried the Arrow against the Shahab characteristics, but we know now that we are capable of intercepting all existing ballistic missile threats in the region, whether conventional or non-conventional, and we are developing capabilities to deal with future threats," Director of the Israel Missile Defence Organisation Arieh Herzog told JDW.

Following the interception, IAF's MIM-104 Patriot low- to high-altitude air-defence batteries joined the test, simulating an additional interception at lower altitude. Israel's ballistic missile defence concept is based on a two-tier layered defence in which the AWS constitutes the higher layer and the Patriot an additional, lower layer.

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