Wednesday, 20 September 2017
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editorials

The New York Times

More Than Missiles
With the apparent killing of the Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud by an American drone, President Obama seems to be having some success with his military policy for Pakistan. He is having less luck in Washington.

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New York Times

War Games
The country is fighting two very difficult wars. It needs a secretary of the Army, and President Obama has chosen Representative John McHugh, a Republican, for the job. Yet Senators Sam Brownback and Pat Roberts have selfishly put a hold on his nomination along with nine other appointments to the Pentagon and the Justice Department.

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The New York Times

Battle's Latent Scars
During World War I, Siegfried Sassoon, the poet of trench warfare, wrote of what were then called shell-shocked comrades: "They'll soon forget their haunted nights; their cowed subjection to the ghosts of friends who died." That dark irony is finally being acknowledged at the Pentagon, where the Army has announced an ambitious program to train soldiers in the risks of stress, depression and suicide. On the modern battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, one out of five active or returning soldiers is suffering from these ailments.

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The New York Times

The Torture Papers
The Obama administration has taken important steps toward repairing the grievous harm that President George W. Bush did to this nation with his lawless and morally repugnant detention policies. President Obama is committed to closing the Guantánamo Bay camp and creating legitimate courts to try detainees. He has rescinded the executive orders and the legal rulings that Mr. Bush used to excuse the abuse of prisoners.

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New York Times

What Torture Never Told Us
PUublic bravado aside, the defenders of the so-called enhanced interrogation techniques are fast running out of classified documents to hide behind. The three that were released recently by the C.I.A. — the 2004 report by the inspector general and two memos from 2004 and 2005 on intelligence gained from detainees — fail to show that the techniques stopped even a single imminent threat of terrorism.

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The New York Times

That September Deadline
The United States and the other major powers have given Iran until late September to begin substantive negotiations on restraining its nuclear program. And Tehran has now announced that it is ready to resume talks, and the Obama administration says it is ready, too. Unfortunately, there is no sign that Iran is serious about doing much more than buying more time.

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The New York Times

Back to Bagram
As it works to shut down the detention camp at Guantánamo Bay, the Obama administration faces a no less pressing challenge in bringing the larger military detention center at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan squarely within the rule of law and fundamental notions of fairness. Recent developments are cause for both real encouragement and serious concern.

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New York Times

The Subject Was Nuclear Weapons
With President Obama chairing the session and 13 other leaders around the table, the United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution on Thursday intended to strengthen the fraying rules that are supposed to stop the spread of nuclear weapons.

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New York Times

Just Say No
Indian nuclear scientists are trying to bully their government into testing a nuclear weapon. That would be a huge setback — for India's relations with Washington, for the battle against terrorists, and for global efforts to halt the spread of nuclear weapons.

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The Gray Report on UK defence procurement
Executive summary of the Gray report on Defence acquisition and the Government's response can be read at Defence Viewpoints
Defence Viewpoints

Damning UK defence equipment review criticises 'infinite demand'
A damning official report has exposed Britain's defence equipment programme as an unaffordable "fiction", prompting ministers to order a radical shake-up at the Ministry of Defence.
Financial Times

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Lockheed martin wins new Aircraft contract
Lockheed Martin Corp was awarded a $827,400,000 contract which will provide for the advance procurement funding for three FY10 Air Force C-130J aircraft, four FY10 HC-130J aircraft, and four FY10 MC-130J aircraft.
Defpro

Iraq set to buy Russian weaponry
A military delegation from Iraq will visit Moscow in the near future to discuss the purchase of Russian weaponry, an Iraqi parliament member has said.
RIA Novosti

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New York Times

The Vietnam War We Ignore
As President Obama and his advisers contemplate a new course for Afghanistan, many commentators are suggesting analogies with earlier conflicts, particularly the war in Vietnam. Such comparisons can be useful, but only if the characterizations of earlier wars are accurate and lessons are appropriately applied.

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The New York Times

More Iranian Injustice
The journalist Maziar Bahari joined his pregnant wife in London this week after being freed from an Iranian prison where he had been held for five months. That is welcome news, but it would be a mistake to think that the mullahs who run the government had been seized with humanitarian spirit. If anything, they seem more determined to shift the blame for the unrest that followed the fraudulent June 12 election to America and other "foreigners."

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Nimrod report is most devastating in living memory
The families of the 14 servicemen who lost their lives when Nimrod XV230 burst into flames and crashed in Afghanistan on September 2, 2006, now know that the accident occurred because of years of complacency, safety reviews that were riddled with errors and a general lack of care towards the personnel who had to fly the aircraft in a dangerous environment, such as Afghanistan.
The Times

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BAE Systems duels General Dynamics over tanks
BAE Systems and General Dynamics are squaring up over the Fres (Future Rapid Effect System) specialist vehicles contract. On Thursday the groups will pitch their offers to the Ministry of Defence for the £2 billion first slice of the deal, for 600 vehicles. The winner is expected to be in pole position for the rest of the Fres order.
The Times

US politicians face inquiry into arms deals
More than 30 US politicians, among them seven members of a defence procurement committee, are being investigated in congressional ethics inquiries into influence-peddling, according to a document leaked accidentally on to the internet.
The Times

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South Africa drops Airbus contract
South Africa has become the first customer to cancel its order for the A400M military transport aircraft from Airbus, dealing yet another blow to the struggling pan-European aircraft programme.
Financial Times

Dassault denies Rafale price cut in Brazil
French aircraft manufacturer Dassault Aviation has denied a newspaper report on Friday that it was cutting the price of its Rafale fighter jet by 40 percent to secure a sale to the Brazilian army.
Reuters

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UK 'considering extra Chinooks'
Plans to fast-track a large order of Chinook transport helicopters for Afghanistan are being examined by the government, the BBC understands.
BBC News

Defence work boosts Babcock results
Engineering group Babcock reported better-than-expected first-half results, as defence contracts protected profits from falling sales in the rail business.
The Telegraph

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MoD may sell aircraft carrier to India to limit cuts
One of Britain's new £2bn aircraft carriers could be sold off under cost-cutting plans being considered by the Ministry of Defence. India has lodged a firm expression of interest, the Observer has learned.
The Guardian

RAF plans huge cuts in aircraft and stations
Air Force chiefs are preparing to cut 10,000 staff — a quarter of their manpower — and close up to five large air stations. The plans will reduce the RAF's strength to 31,000 personnel over the next five years, little more than half the level during the recent Iraq conflict.
The Times

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MoD considers call for big rise in outsourcing
The Ministry of Defence is considering dramatically expanding the support work it outsources to private companies. The news comes only weeks after an independent report cited the trend towards contracting-out as a key factor in the 2006 Nimrod reconnaissance aircraft explosion in which 14 servicemen were killed.
Financial Times

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The New York Times

Old soldiers never cash out

For all the stars of ranking generals and admirals in Washington, it turns out there's still a higher grade — "senior mentor." These are retired brass enjoying lucrative compensation as part-time Pentagon advisers, who, in most cases, also draw V.I.P. pay from companies seeking defense contracts.

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